dcsimg

Read about online colleges for healthcare and the programs, degrees and training that may be available to students.

Online Health Degrees

Online degrees in health can help prepare students for a wide range of careers in the healthcare industry. These programs vary depending on the specific degree being pursued and the career path the student plans to enter. With an online healthcare degree, and the proper licensure, graduates may qualify to enter fields such as nursing, home health aid, dental assisting, healthcare administration or medical billing and coding.

Online Degrees in Health

Online healthcare schools typically provide students with the opportunity to complete their coursework remotely and on a schedule that fits their needs. As with campus-based studies, the curriculum content of an online program will depend on the degree being sought. In general, healthcare programs help students learn about the human body and medical science, preparing them for the specific tasks they'll approach in their future jobs. Due to the physical nature of health services, some degrees may only be available as hybrid programs, requiring students to complete hands-on training sessions in addition to their online coursework.

Healthcare programs remain popular because the healthcare industry is one of few that have continued to grow despite the economic recession. A 2012 Georgetown University study found that the healthcare industry should add 5.6 million new jobs by 2020, with nursing a particularly fast-growing profession. However, degree requirements for advancement in the healthcare field have also increased. While specific qualifications vary, many professions require that individuals pass state licensure or certification exams, particularly before practicing medicine.

Healthcare Degree Specializations

A number of different degrees and specializations fall under the umbrella category of healthcare. While physicians, surgeons and dentists all require doctoral level degrees that are generally not available online, students can train to become registered nurses, home health aides, physical therapists, medical assistants, occupational therapists, dental hygienists, massage therapists, or other healthcare professionals through online degree programs.

  • Associate Degree in Health - Generally completed in two years of full-time coursework, associate degrees are designed to quickly prepare students for an entry-level position in the healthcare field, such as cardiovascular technologist, dental hygienist, medical assisting, office billing and coding, and more. Coursework varies according to specific degree concentration. Some associate programs can be completed entirely online, while others may involve hands-on training sessions.
  • Bachelor's Degree in Health - Bachelor's degrees usually take four years of full-time study to complete. They're less often geared towards specific healthcare industry professions, but are considered the standard background required for careers like dietitian and nutritionist, occupational health and safety specialist, and recreational therapist. Bachelor's degrees in healthcare management or administration are available online as well.
  • Master's Degree in Health - A master's degree typically involves two years of additional study after a bachelor's degree is completed, and gives students more focused study in a particular field or profession. In the healthcare industry, a master's degree may help train students to become occupational therapists, physicians' assistants, and speech-language pathologists. As for online colleges for health, some master's degree in nursing programs or in healthcare management may be found available through online coursework.
  • Doctoral Degree in Health - A doctoral-level degree is required for many of the highest-paying careers in the healthcare industry. The time required to complete a doctorate program varies, but can be between three and six years beyond the completion of a bachelor's degree. At the doctoral level, online schools may offer degrees in healthcare administration or management, as well as a Doctor of Nursing Practice.

Related Careers in Healthcare

Depending on their particular degree, graduates of online healthcare programs may consider entering a number of different career paths. Often, one degree can serve as a stepping stone, allowing a graduate to transition into a more specialized field later in their career. Related occupations might include:

  • Medical and Health Services Managers - Healthcare administrators oversee medical and health services at a wide range of facilities. According to BLS, they may manage a single department within a larger facility, like a hospital, or supervise an entire clinic or practice themselves. These professionals generally need a bachelor's degree in a field such as healthcare administration or public health, although master's degrees are common as well.
  • Licensed Practical Nurse - Also called Licensed Vocational Nurses, LPNs work with doctors and registered nurses to provide basic care to patients in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, or private homes. To become an LPN, individuals must earn a nursing degree from an accredited program and pass the NCLEX state licensing exams.
  • Sonographer - These healthcare workers use imaging equipment to detect sound waves and form images of the inside of a patient's body, commonly known as ultrasounds or sonograms. Sonographers specialize in a particular part of the body, such as OB-GYN sonography or abdominal sonography. The job typically requires an associate degree, although one-year certificate programs can be an option for people who already have training in related healthcare fields.

Healthcare Industry Trends

Growth in the healthcare industry has remained strong despite the recession, thanks in part to an aging baby boomer population, longer life spans and people leading more active lives than in the past. Careers related to caring for the elderly, like nurses and home health aides may see job opportunities continue to increase. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov, 2012) projects especially large growth rates over the next decade for the following industries:

  • Medical and Health Services Managers - 22 percent nationwide from 2010 to 2020
  • Licensed Practical Nurses - 22 percent nationwide from 2010 to 2020
  • Sonographers - 44 percent nationwide from 2010 to 2020

Sources:
Dental Hygienists, Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/dental-hygienists.htm
"Healthcare Industry Will Create 5.6 Million More Jobs By 2020: Study," The Huffington Post, 2012, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/21/health-care-job-creation_n_1613479.html
Healthcare, Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, 2009, http://cew.georgetown.edu/healthcare/
Healthcare Occupations, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2012, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses, Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/licensed-practical-and-licensed-vocational-nurses.htm
Medical and Health Services Managers, Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Management/Medical-and-health-services-managers.htm

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

    See More

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Showing schools in your area

            Prefer exploring options talking to our staff?
            Call toll free now: 1.855.330.6938
            Matching School Ads
            MA Human Services: Health & Wellness
            • Liberty University provides a worldclass education from a christ-centered worldview
            • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels
            • No standardized testing if student meets admission requirements
            • Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
            • 87% of Liberty University students receive some form of financial aid
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            A.S. - Medical Billing & Coding
            • Change your life! Ultimate Medical Academy will be here every step of the way.
            • UMA is a nonprofit healthcare career school committed to helping you succeed.
            • Once you enroll, you’ll receive individualized student services like: Flexible online learning, Academic support, Access to one-on-one and group tutoring.
            • UMA’s Online Associate Degree Program offerings is tailored the meet the needs of the healthcare industry.
            • Since 1994, UMA has educated thousands of students across the nation at our online and Clearwater, FL campuses.
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Master's – Healthcare Management
            • Offers MUSE (My Unique Student Experience), a content delivery system that gives students the option to watch, view, read or listen to required course materials.
            • Allows students to complete courses at whatever pace they want.
            • Provides IntelliPath, a proprietary learning technology that lets students learn at their own pace.
            • A DANTES-affiliated university and member of the Service Members Opportunity Colleges.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assistant (10-Month Diploma Program)
            UEI College , Anaheim
            • Dedicated to providing  career training since 1975.
            • Has 13 campus locations in Southern California and a campus in Morrow, GA.
            • Provides flexible class times including weekends.
            • Offers curriculum that ranges from 8 month diploma programs to 16-month Associate of Applied Science degree programs.
            • Has admissions professionals available to help students decide which diploma or degree program they should pursue.
            • Gives job placement assistance strengthened by relationships with local employers.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Vocational Nursing
            • Offers medical and cosmetic programs, including dental assisting, massage therapy, cosmetology, esthetics, and more.
            • Features a public salon and spa where students may get real-world experience.
            • Offers scholarship opportunities for students wo qualify.
            • Accredited by the Council on Occupational Education (COE).
            • 2 separate Vacaville campuses, one is for medical careers and the other is the beauty academy.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Medical Assisting (AOS)

            The Secret to Getting Ahead Is Getting Started

            Congratulations! Your interest in California College San Diego® is an important first step toward changing your life. A career-focused degree is the key to a new career with a potentially higher income, better benefits, and more satisfaction.

            Vocational Nursing

            Unitek College – About Us

            Unitek College™ is a privately held vocational school dedicated to helping you gain the skills needed to advance your career or begin a brand new career. Your training at Unitek College will position you to take advantage of the rising demand for experts in allied health, nursing, and technology professions. Our programs include Medical Assisting, Pharmacy Technician, Dental Assisting, Vocational Nursing, and Bachelor of Science in Nursing: RN-to-BSN Degree Completion.

            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Professional Medical Assistant
            • A part of the Select Education Group (SEG).
            • Offers several scholarship and financial aid opportunities for students who qualify.
            • California campuses accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC), and accreditation for the Salem campus from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET).
            • 4 Campuses located in Clovis, Modesto, and Redding in California, and Salem, Oregon.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assistant Program
            • Offers training in various types of massage therapy, physical therapy/sports rehab, and personal fitness training & wellness.
            • Teaches in an environment that promotes learning and encourages empathetic and compassionate therapists.
            • Career service professionals work directly with students from the start of their program, and help them pursue employment in day spas, luxury hotels, cruise ships, and other locations.
            • Students can work in the SOCHI Massage Clinic to gain experience and build their career skills.
            • Financial aid representatives help students develop a personalized financial plan to finance their tuition.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Financial Aid
            BS in Healthcare Administration

            Discover the Difference a Community of Support Makes in Your Educational Journey. From Application to Graduation, the Guidance You Need to Achieve Your Goals. 100% Online.

            From enrollment services representatives who’ll guide you through the application process to interactive tools that help you collaborate with instructors and classmates, NEC inspires you to reach the milestones of your educational journey.
             

            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits